Already seven weeks of waiting for yellow fever vaccination: are your travel vaccines OK?

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Now that most corona rules are a thing of the past, many are getting ready to travel. For distant destinations, this sometimes includes vaccinations. Waiting times for the yellow fever vaccine are increasing rapidly, reports The Importance of Limburg† Which vaccine do you need for which destination? And where can you go for that?


Thursday 2 June 2022 at 14:56

Which vaccines are most commonly administered to travelers, and for which countries do you need them?

For many countries in South America and Africa, travelers are advised to be vaccinated against before departure yellow fever† In certain countries on the latter continent, such as Congo, Ivory Coast and Cameroon, it is even mandatory for visitors to be vaccinated.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), a yellow fever vaccination is valid for life. However, the Tropical Institute emphasizes that it is not certain that everyone is protected for life after a first vaccine. It is therefore recommended that you have one more vaccination on your next trip to an area where yellow fever occurs.

The risk of hepatitis Ajaundice, or contagious jaundice, is greater in countries with a low standard of hygiene. This concerns most (sub)tropical countries and a number of countries in Eastern Europe and around the Mediterranean Sea. You need to be vaccinated twice against this liver infection, at least six months apart. After the first vaccination there is at least one year of protection, after the second you are protected for life.

For travel to Africa or Asia, a vaccination against polio or polio recommended, if you have not had a recurrence after the age of 16. Sometimes the vaccination is mandatory for travelers who travel from countries on that continent to other countries.

You can check yourself whether you need vaccines for your destination at, the travel website of the Tropical Institute. There you can also go for a travel consultation, where tailor-made advice is given about protection against diseases that occur at your destination.

Where can you go for your vaccination?

The hepatitis A vaccine and the polio vaccination can be administered by your doctor. For a vaccination against yellow fever you can only enter recognized centers justly.

If you do not get an appointment in time in Belgium, you can always try in neighboring countries. The internationally valid WHO yellow vaccination booklet is also used there.

How far in advance do you have to make an appointment for a vaccination?

The Tropical Institute recommends that you make an appointment with your GP or travel clinic at least six to eight weeks before departure. Most vaccines need ten days to be effective anyway. Because we are now (until the end of August) in the busiest period of the year, it is recommended to meet immediately if you know your travel destination.

From a survey of The Importance of Limburg It turns out that waiting times for the yellow fever vaccine quickly increase to seven weeks. You can only visit the Jessa Travel Clinic in Hasselt from 15 July and Gasthuisberg in Leuven from 18 July. At the Tropical Institute in Antwerp, a first appointment is only possible on 20 July.

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